August 2020

Reviewing the Universal Logistics Standards (ULS):

ULS are intended to be used by organizations, staff and volunteers as guidance to improve the quality of disaster preparedness and response based on the best practices in humanitarian supply chain and logistics, This project is led by the Inspire Consortium (Groupe Urgence-Réhabilitation-Développement- Groupe URD, Global Public Policy Institute- GPPi, the Instituto de Estudios sobre Conflictos y Acción Humanitaria- IECAH and the Overseas Development Institute- ODI) with the support of the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (DG ECHO).

Procurement, Warehousing, Transport, Distribution, Fleet and Asset Management are the main topics covered by the ULS. The six chapters include cross-cutting issues; key aspects of the humanitarian identity (principles and protection) and important trends in humanitarian logistics (environment and cash-based interventions).

Since beginning of July, regional consultation groups in different continents have started the review of the ULS´ first draft, prepared by our Technical Advisory Group (TAG) .

A mixed group of experts from West African has initiated the series of two-hour sessions looking for a precise understanding of Universal Logistics Standards chapters.

The African consultation has been followed by more sessions in Latin America and Asia-Pacific, reaching the possibility to listen, discuss and pointing out specific needs and situations taking place in different humanitarian contexts. This is the way ULS are turning into global and universal. The interest and specificity of the comments, together with practical contributions, have given to the project a full approach that will be collected in the final document.

From mid-July, version 1 of the draft is also open and accessible in an online platform, free for logistics professionals and experts from all around the world. After logging in this URL, everybody has the chance to read the full document and send comments. It is a live and ongoing process that will be active till September 14th.

The second part of September will be the moment to review the draft with these insights and publish a second version.

One year after the project start, the ULS, as fruit of collective and global work, generated great interest and enthusiasm from a variety of humanitarian and logistics actors. The pilot version of the standards will be published at the end of October 2020.